Matías Almeyda has won 5 titles with the Chivas of Guadalajara and is on track to become the team's most winning coach
One of the best clubs in the history of all Mexico was, is and will be the Sports Club of Guadalajara. The traditional club, also known as the Chivas Rayadas del Guadalajara, went through a tough period in which they did not know how to raise a single official title and in which América and Toluca seemed to take advantage in the Aztec football. But unknowingly, his redeemer arrived on September 16, 2015 directly from Argentina, something unusual for a club whose history is closely linked to people born in Mexico.
Leer en español: ¿Cómo un argentino logró recuperar la gloria de las Chivas?
The foreign savior who restored the memory
The club has a tradition of only having Mexican players. This conditioned a bit the arrival of a foreign coach, even more knowing that the last foreign technical directors had seasons for oblivion. The Spanish Xabier Azkargorta in 2005, the Dutchman John van 't Schip in 2012 and the Argentine Carlos Bustos in 2014 were the last foreign coaches of the Chivas and none of them managed to raise a single cup.
Slowly, the Chivas Rayadas del Guadalajara were losing their winning memory since they won their last official title in 2006. Twelve coaches went through and none managed to make the Chivas champion, until from Argentina came a savior, a redeemer: Matías Almeyda. The Argentine, idol in the River Plate of his country, had only achieved second division titles as a coach: one with the 'millionaire' team, as River is also known, and another with Banfield, also from Argentina. Even so, Almeyda assumed the position of one of the giants of Mexico.
Almeyda did not take long to win over the Chivas supporters, as it was only in their second league game that they won against América, the club's greatest historical rival. The Chivas were recovering their successful memory throughout the season, and on November 4, 2015 they won the Copa MX Apertura title. This was the first title of First Division for Almeyda in his career as a coach and the first club since 2006. Matías made history and the Chivas recovered it.
The effectiveness of an idol
Matías Almeyda, already with his Chivas recovered from their amnesia, began an ambitious football process in each of the competitions he would play. After their triumph in the MX Copa Apertura 2015, Almeyda's Chivas won the Supercopa MX 2015-16. In addition, they reached the final in the Copa MX Apertura 2016, won the Copa MX Clausura 2017, won the Torneo Clausura 2017 (Closing Tournament, in English) and lost the Campeón de Campeones 2016-17 (Champion of Champions, in English).
The Chivas made possible for this ambitious sports project to be effective and to bear fruit. In Almeyda's era the Chivas won league, cup and supercup, but the international title was missing, so the Argentine did not rest until it was possible. On April 25, 2018, the Chivas Rayadas del Guadalajara managed to lift their second title in their history of the Liga de Campeones de la CONCACAF (CONCACAF Champions League, in English), 56 years after having achieved their first.
The effectiveness of Almeyda with their Chivas is very high, because of seven disputed finals they have managed to win five, one of them at an international level. The Chivas will play at the end of the year the FIFA Club World Cup and will become the first team in the history of the competition to participate with only Mexican players. Of course, with the Argentine idol commanding them.
With five titles, Matías Almeyda has become the Chivas idol. However, to become the most acclaimed, the Argentine still has an emblematic coach ahead in the race. With twelve titles (five leagues and one CONCACAF Champions League), the Mexican Javier de la Torre is the most successful coach in Chivas history. If Almeyda continues to win titles and achieve the championship in the FIFA Club World Cup, he will have enough merits to be considered the best coach in the Chivas of Guadalajara's history.
LatinAmerican Post | Javier Aldana
Translated from "¿Cómo un argentino logró recuperar la gloria de las Chivas?"